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First app isn't doing as well as I hoped, Why?

BackUpAndDownBackUpAndDown Posts: 685Member
edited November -1 in Working with GS (Mac)
As some of you might already know a few days ago I released my first official game. Prior to release I had spent months working on it and am quite proud of the finished product. The only problem is that It gets about 4 downloads a day... Could anyone tell me why that is? Do the graphics look too juvenile? Are frogs not as popular as birds? I would really love to hear what you think and what I could do to boost the sales. I'm not really concerned about the monetary gain I'm just curious why it doesn't do as well as other apps that are the same quality.

iTunes Link: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/tadpole-rescue/id439658986?mt=8&ls=1

Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Tadpole-Rescue/211669698867886

Trailer:

Comments

  • MrshoestoreMrshoestore Posts: 181Member
    well... what have you done for marketing the game? If no one knows about it, you can't expect people to buy it.
  • SkyMapleSkyMaple Posts: 817Member
    The graphics aren't bad (very good actually!). But mrshoestore is right, you probably should do some advertising.

    Btw- you might want to change the title of the post ;D
  • BackUpAndDownBackUpAndDown Posts: 685Member
    I posted on TouchArcade and made a youtube video. The TA post has gotten over 400 hits and the video has about 50 views. I also made the announcement here but It doesn't show how many views thats gotten.

    I don't think exposure is really a problem in this case, for some reason people just aren't interested.
  • SkyMapleSkyMaple Posts: 817Member
    How about a more descriptive description? Maybe flashier screenshots?
  • gyroscopegyroscope I am here.Posts: 6,577Member, Sous Chef, PRO
    Hiya BackUpAndDown; it's easy to get despondent I'm sure (I've yet to get any finished game into the App Store yet but I know what it's like with my music and writing) but don't put yourself down, really. It's your first game, and things can only get better with your next games. It doesn't help to analyze it too much either; get going on your next one!

    In my opinion, Tadpole Rescue is a neat little game with passable, fun graphics but it falls - to be honest - into the category of a"time-waster" rather than a game that you've just gotta play. (This is trying to be constructively critical without actually playing the game, of course).

    I'm wondering how many games are submitted each and every day to the store. For certain, you're having to compete with over a third of a million other games and apps; it can never be easy. Also the bar is set very high: here are some screenshots of games on the Apple website:

    http://www.apple.com/ipodtouch/games-and-apps/

    I mean to take the rose-coloured spectacles from you, that's all; it doesn't detract from all of your hard work you put into your game. I guess you just have to be a little more realistic perhaps.

    So keep going, and like any types of media to be consumed by the public, just good enough just isn't good enough anymore. There's so much talent out there that we've all got to somehow compete with; no one said it was easy...

    I hope you gain "strength" from what I've said and it helps with your next game; keep up the enthusiasm, and keep the (GS) faith!

    :-)

    ""You are in a maze of twisty passages, all alike." - Zork        temp domain http://spidergriffin.wix.com/alphaghostapps

  • BackUpAndDownBackUpAndDown Posts: 685Member
    @SkyMaple

    Hmm, yeah I guess thats true. But how would I make a screenshot flashier? Is there another app you could point me towards to use as an example?

    @Gyroscope

    I've already gotten started on my next game but I kinda wanted to figure out what I did wrong with this one so that I could learn from my mistakes. I fully agree with everything you've said and I understand that it doesn't really compare to a lot of the other games out there but it doesn't even seem to be doing as well as other games of it's caliber.

    Just out of curiosity, what makes a game a "Just gotta play" and not a "time-waster"? Seems like that may be the main thing holding me back. lol
  • MrshoestoreMrshoestore Posts: 181Member
    BackUpAndDown said:
    I posted on TouchArcade and made a youtube video. The TA post has gotten over 400 hits and the video has about 50 views. I also made the announcement here but It doesn't show how many views thats gotten.

    I don't think exposure is really a problem in this case, for some reason people just aren't interested.

    So... there are 3 places you can find out about the game, one of them being a forum for people who design games, not necessarily buy them.

    You have 50 promo codes to use up. Create a press kit for the game and individually email as many app reviewers and bloggers that you can, big or small. Send them the video of the game/ screeshots/ and exciting description to gain their interest, and send them a promo code so they play it and review it.

    Word of mouth, Tell everyone you know, friends and family, to download the game, and tell them to tell everyone they know to do the same.

    And something people don't mention. Advertise locally. Seriously, you may be able to pull off a "local indie game designer takes a chance at success" sort of newspaper article, if your town is small enough.

    connect with whoever you can connect with.

    But like gyroscope says... it's not easy. But you could have the best game go un-noticed if you don't tell the right people about it.
  • gyroscopegyroscope I am here.Posts: 6,577Member, Sous Chef, PRO
    BackUpAndDown said:

    I've already gotten started on my next game but I kinda wanted to figure out what I did wrong with this one so that I could learn from my mistakes. I fully agree with everything you've said and I understand that it doesn't really compare to a lot of the other games out there but it doesn't even seem to be doing as well as other games of it's caliber.

    It's good you're already working on another; best of luck with it. And I see what you're saying; maybe there's a "saturation point" for this type of game maybe? And as Mrshoestore pointed out if no one knows about the game it just gets lost.

    At the least perhaps look into getting a Press Release together and sending to the review sites; some might bite. I only know of Touch Arcade and a couple others; maybe another Forum member would start a thread on a definitive list of game review sites? That'll help us all! Any tips on a successful PR would be useful too.
    BackUpAndDown said:

    Just out of curiosity, what makes a game a "Just gotta play" and not a "time-waster"? Seems like that may be the main thing holding me back. lol

    Difficult to evaluate...maybe. That's worth a thread of it's own; I'll be really interested in other members' opinions there; and hopefully that'll help you too.

    :-)

    ""You are in a maze of twisty passages, all alike." - Zork        temp domain http://spidergriffin.wix.com/alphaghostapps

  • ChaserChaser Posts: 1,453Member
    I don't think you should look at it as what you did wrong because I think graphics look good. Perhaps action shots. But I feel sales are getting worse for apps that aren't front page of the store. My latest Multi Moto is doing horrifically after working several months on it. My older faster produced apps are doing better.
  • BackUpAndDownBackUpAndDown Posts: 685Member
    What exactly is a Press kit/Press Release? I'm still new to the business side of things and don't know all the lingo yet. lol
  • MrshoestoreMrshoestore Posts: 181Member
    https://docs.google.com/fileview?id=0B_D29jhmPSfOYThmYWUyZWUtNDQzZi00MzBkLTljN2YtYWIwZTc5MmU3ZWRm&hl=en&pli=1

    that's a decent write up of Press Kits as they relate to video games. I say decent because I actually haven't read it, but skimming it I can tell that they've got the basics correct, and you can probably learn a good deal from it.
  • BackUpAndDownBackUpAndDown Posts: 685Member
    Awesome, thanks. ^_^
  • MrshoestoreMrshoestore Posts: 181Member
    I should also mention that you should be well aware of you target demographic, and market to that. You'd probably be wasting your time trying to sell a video game called Tadpole Rescue to people that read Guns&Ammo.
  • BackUpAndDownBackUpAndDown Posts: 685Member
    Mrshoestore said:
    I should also mention that you should be well aware of you target demographic, and market to that. You'd probably be wasting your time trying to sell a video game called Tadpole Rescue to people that read Guns&Ammo.

    lol Yeah, I kinda figured that. Are there any sites that just review all types of apps that you could recommend?
  • mangaroomangaroo Posts: 419Member
    That filesize is quite low, sometimes people may judge the content by that number, sort of backfires by keeping it as low as possible. it also indicates limited artwork which may have some slight impact towards your sales - other then the previous advice on marketing as such
  • MrshoestoreMrshoestore Posts: 181Member
    BackUpAndDown said:
    lol Yeah, I kinda figured that. Are there any sites that just review all types of apps that you could recommend?

    Umm... not really. It's all about context.

    What I would do is do a Google search and find sites at have iOS reviews on it, then read reviews. Find out which writers and reviewers have a soft spot for cutesy kid-oriented games (or whatever target you are shooting for) By finding reviewers with similar tastes, yet different audiences, you can reach a larger number of buyers.

    Keep in mind, there's a reason companies have a PR department, and not having the programmers run out to sell the game. It's a LOT of work, and takes a different mindset than the one to create the game.

    Hope this helps some.
  • guillefaceguilleface Posts: 997Member
    i dont know if iam wrong but this is me, i like the title to be related to the icon,or the icon to show what the game is about, i only see a frog doing what? so is not catching my attention, also if you have alot levels, try to put one picture of each, that way people can see your game is different,me personally dont buy games that have screenshots that look the same,try putting some other ones where people can see your playing different levels, but like i say that is my thoughts, good luck,
  • EastboundEastbound Posts: 1,074Member, BASIC
    #1) If you are hoping for people to read the description to get a good idea of what the game is about, don't. Not that people won't read it, but a majority do AFTER they look at the screenshots. So for puzzle games especially, you might have to include some words over the shots, or try to find screenshots that make it painfully obvious.

    #2) That being said, I can't tell anything about your game based on the screenshots, and the character is in the same position in all of them. This leads me to believe there isn't much variety.

    #3) All screenshots have the same background, which would also lead me to believe the game play is limited- not much variety. Simply changing the color scheme as the player advances can be very effective. This leads to different looking screenshots, and the viewer would assume more levels probably. Without that, I would assume there aren't many (again, this is based off the fact that most people go to screenshots first, and ignore the description if it doesn't appeal to them).

    #4) Do you have a lite version advertising it?
  • MammothMammoth Posts: 640Member
    Perhaps make another game with a link to this one (if you have pro). Lite versions with ads and links could help more sales. I think its a neat game :)

    www.mammothinteractive.net
  • kapserkapser Posts: 458Member
    *Erased post about too short description*

    Edit: My bad I didn't press the more description button.. You can tell I don't use itune at all XD

    Maybe you should start with description on top instead of what it contains. Also, it seems more of an arcade game than puzzle, what category did you put it in?
  • rmantechrmantech Posts: 7Member
    Hi I would suggest adding facebook ads and even using free website like digg.com.
  • 11clock11clock Posts: 450Member
    I'm not even getting 2 downloads a day with my $0.99 app. I only get like 0-2 downloads a WEEK. I've never had good luck with attracting attention to my games. Yes, I even sent my app to several review sites and gave out promo codes. Guess what? Only 2 reviews from all of this!
  • THINGTHINGTHINGTHING Posts: 84Member
    HI BackUpandDown i am making an app and i was wondering. What art program do you use ??? please help
  • THINGTHINGTHINGTHING Posts: 84Member
  • THINGTHINGTHINGTHING Posts: 84Member
    BTW i think your game looks really good ;)
  • mrglocklingmrglockling Posts: 258Member
    Hi as you probably already get it I would like a bunch of apple related pages and advertise I on there 1 page has over 1,000,000 likes so I would try that :)
This discussion has been closed.